Labor and Economic Opportunity
Contact: Mike Murray
September 12, 2019
LANSING, MI – The need for talent has never been greater. Projections show that by the end of 2026, Michigan will experience a professional trades workforce gap with more than 545,000 job openings due to retiring baby boomers and the emergence of new technologies.
The Going PRO Talent Fund (Talent Fund) grants create public-private partnerships with employers to design training models that adapt with changing employer demand. Criteria for the grants include that training is short term, must lead to a credential for a skill that is transferable, recognized by industry, and must lead to or continue permanent, full-time employment.
Since 2014, the State of Michigan has dedicated over $99 million dollars through the Talent Fund and its predecessor, the Skilled Trades Training Fund. This investment has resulted in 3,096 competitive awards to Michigan companies, the creation of 21,545 jobs, and the retention of 72,542 jobs since the program’s inception.
Governor Gretchen Whitmer announced a new statewide goal of increasing the number of Michiganders between the ages of 16 and 64 with a post-secondary credential from 45 to 60 percent by 2030. The Talent Fund aligns with the Governor’s goal by providing a path for working Michiganders to up-skill through employer training and in-demand industry certifications.
The Talent Fund program is implemented locally by the 16 Michigan Works! Agencies, who handle outreach to employers in their region. Employers with a need for skill enhancement, including apprenticeship programs and advance-technology training programs for current employees or individuals to be hired, may be eligible to apply.
The application period for the Fiscal Year 2020 grants, which features a new online application system, opens Thursday, Sept. 12, 2019 and closes Wednesday, Oct. 2, 2019, at 5:00 p.m. EST. A list of Michigan Works! contacts for employers and more information on the Talent Fund, including a link to the online application system, can be found on the Going PRO Talent Fund website.
About the Department of Labor and Economic Opportunity – Workforce Development
LEO-WD promotes a flexible, innovative, and effective workforce system within the State of Michigan. LEO-WD supports a demand driven workforce system, assists the structurally unemployed with financial independence, advocates for the integration of workforce development into the K-12 school system, and supports the alignment of workforce development with economic development efforts. Please visit our website to see all that we offer.